Paddle through 16 breathtaking and prize-winning underwater photos
Dance of the rays
The Best of Show image from the 2018 Ocean Art Underwater Photo Competition was shot by Duncan Murrell in Honda Bay off the Philippines. It uses soft light to accentuate the swirling ballet of the three spinetail devil rays, as two males pursue a female. In addition to the best in show honor, Murrell won first place in the marine life category, and a cruise to Indonesia's southern islands.
Sealed with a kiss
Greg Lecoeur of Nice, France, won first place in the cold water category and a six-night dive package in Indonesia for this image of a friendly seal.
PT Hirschfield won first place in the compact behavior category, and a seven-night dive package, for his image taken off Victoria, Australia. It shows a ravenous unmolted spider crab fiercely feasting upon a freshly molted crab.
Sejung Jang took first place in the compact macro category and won a seven-night cruise for this shot, taken in Anilao, Philippines. It was the Korean photographer's first time seeing red hairy shrimp.
Melody Chuang won first place in the compact wide-angle category for this shot of jellyfish off of Taiwan. Her husband, Stan Chen, used a flashlight to backlight his wife's photos as the couple followed the jellyfish for over a mile.
Jeff Milisen won first place in the macro category and a diving trip for this photo of a sharp-eared enope squid in Hawaii. He followed it to a depth of 90 feet before deciding "it was time to leave my new little friend at peace."
Fabrice Dudenhofer won first place in the mirrorless behavior category, and a seven-night trip to the Solomon Islands, for this shot of a clown fish and its eggs, taken in the waters off Japan. The photographer reported that the parents swam endlessly around the eggs in order to oxygenate them.
Steven Walsh took first place in the mirrorless macro category, winning a seven-night dive package in Palau. His photograph shows three big-belly seahorse fry in the waters off Victoria, Australia.
Out for a swim
Eugene Kitsios won first place in the mirrorless wide-angle category and a nine-night dive package for this photo of three spotted dolphins frolicking off the Bahamas.
Ray of light
Alvin Cheung took first place in the novice DSLR category and won a seven-night dive package for this photo, showing a giant oceanic manta ray becoming curious about another diver in Socorro, Mexico.
Inside the eggs
Flavio Vailati won first place in the Nudibranchs category and a seven-night dive package for this photo of a nudibranch (a type of soft-bodied mollusk) in Anilao, Philippines.
Ready for my close-up
Claudio Zori took first place in the portrait category and won a cruise to Indonesia for this picture of a spotted rat fish, taken in front of God's Pocket dive resort in British Columbia, Canada.
Coral and mangrove
Yen-Yi Lee took first place in the Reefscapes category, winning a seven-night dive package, for this image of soft coral growing on mangrove roots in Raja Ampat, Indonesia.
Edison So took first place in the Supermacro category and won a seven-night dive package for this image of a hairy shrimp in Anilao, Philippines.
Bruno Van Saen took first place in the Underwater Art category and won a weeklong cruise for this shot dubbed "Disco Nudi," which uses a Photoshop filter to create a swirl around a nudibranch spotted in Bali, Indonesia.
François Baelen took first place in the wide-angle category and won a nine-day trip for this photograph of a humpback whale and her calf, taken in the Western Indian Ocean.